The following is a student writing submitted on behalf of McGee Middle School student Monica Padykula following a visit from award-winning author Neal Shusterman this week.
Award winning author, Neal Shusterman, came to McGee Middle
school on Wednesday October 9th to speak about several books that he
published. All students read at least one of his books as part of the summer
reading curriculum. The whole 6th grade read Full Tilt and the 7 and 8th grade got to choose between Unwind, Schwa Was Here, Everlost or Full Tilt.
When he came, he explained his career and the long process
of writing a book. It all started in 9th grade when he watched and
read Jaws. His 9th grade
teacher wanted him to enter a story-writing contest. His story was based on Jaws, but he added different characters
and details. Once he sent in his story he didn’t win anything at all. When his
story got rejected, his 9th grade teacher inspired him to keep
writing. This inspiration kicked off his career. Now he tells his readers never
to give up. He says that you won’t get anywhere in life if you don’t accept
your failures. He has continued his success with hundreds of awards.
I really enjoyed having a chance to listen to his ideas. I
used to see writing as just a writing assignment for a teacher, but now I see
it as an inspiration. The more I write, the more it could bring me somewhere in
life. His success being a fabulous writer has brought him a great life. Now, I feel
empowered to be the best writer I can be.
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